BioShock Infinite 12: Invasive Procedures

In which we meet one Elisabeth, rescue another and board an airship.

We make our way back to the now-unlocked plot door, following the screams. More tears tell us that Elisabeth is still waiting for DeWitt to come, and the Luteces remind us not to ask “what” is going on, but “when” it’s going on. We end up seeing this:
20141214_Asylum_ElisabethThe figure in front of us is Elisabeth. An old Elisabeth.
The lunatics are now running the asylum, we’re told, and all she can do is watch. It wasn’t the torture or the indoctrination that broke her, it was time. Booker’s objection that he was on his way is brushed aside: Songbird always intervened.
What happened, you ask? Comstock’s vision, that his daughter will bring fire to the Sodom below has come true. New York is burning.
20141214_Asylum_NewYorkThis Elisabeth gives DeWitt a card for the younger Elisabeth, an advice how to not become her, and sends him back. Back to the year 1912, when Comstock House hasn’t yet fallen to pieces and when Elisabeth didn’t yet give in to Comstock. I’m not quite sure how Booker (who reveals this to us) can know this, but apparently he does.

We move on towards the operating theatre, where Drs. Pettyfog and Powell are currently implanting a device in Elisabeth. This device is built to cause a considerable amount of pain, should she ever try to open a tear. To be save from her during the procedure, a small version of the syphon is placed alongside. The syphon, first encountered in the monument at Monument Island, is designed to stop Elisabeth from creating new tears (which she could do as a child before the syphon was build, as she tells us later). So we have to take out the whole device.
The operation takes place behind bulletproof glass, so we can’t just go in guns blazing. This would totally ruin a scripted event later on.
We shoot our way past a lot of Founders and disable both parts of the syphon. The doctors discuss whether to sedate Elisabeth once the syphon goes down, but “pain is a vital part of the procedure”, according to Comstock.
Once the syphon is down, Elisabeth opens a tear to a place currently being devastated by a tornado. It doesn’t end well for the doctors.
20141214_Surgery2We free Elisabeth from the… operating device… thing… remove the giant needle from her spine and help her tie her corset. Because that’s probably the first thing you need after getting rescued from the attempt to implant a control device into your neck: less space to breathe.

One might think that Comstock’s state-of-the-art-tortureres psychologists know what they are doing. I’m no longer convinced.
First of all: why does Elisabeth still have her clothes, especially her choker? The choker with the pendant chosen by DeWitt earlier in the game? If they want to break her down and form her in the way Comstock wants her, why do they allow this constant connection to her past? The one explanation I see for this is that they want Elisabeth to realize at her own pace that DeWitt wont come. That they want her to belief in her rescue, only to see that it never comes. “Time rots everything, even hope”. Let her fall to despair without breaking her personality too much. Seems like a rather risky long term plan to me, but okay: I can see reason behind it.
Second point: they plan to implant Elisabeth something. I’m no expert in 1912 medicine, but wouldn’t they at least exchange the corset with something different?
And.. seriously, DeWitt: you’re pulling a medical device you’ve most likely no knowledge about out of Elisabeth? Out of her spine or at least the direct vicinity of it? And move on without even basic care for the wound? It’s matter of pacing here, but still… it doesn’t feel right.

After freeing Elisabeth from the theatre, she’s bound for revenge. She absolutely, positively wants Comstock down and dead. Booker is with her, but he wont let her kill Comstock – he’s going to do that himself.
We give Elisabeth the card from, well, Elisabeth and she can decipher most of it without much problems (no codebook necessary this time). The one thing she doesn’t get is the cage drawn on it.
We pass through the library, a room dominated by a distinct absence of books.
20141214_LibraryOutside we meet more Founders and a MECHA-COMSTOCK! Also, we get a lecture from Comstock that we should stop fighting gravitiy – there’s no way we could possibly win.
Not much to say here, it’s basic shooty-times until we reach a police cruiser, programmed to return to the hand of the prophet for your convenience.
20141214_CruiserOn our way there we’re attacked by both Founders and Vox – it’s a good thing that Columbia’s airships cannot be shot down.
Upon reaching the Hand of the Prophet, we fight our way through it towards Comstock. There’s not much to say about it, it’s common endgame shooty times. Here it’s even better that this thing cannot be taken down by an onboard-firefight.
A bit odd was the modern day control-unit for the Mecha-Comstock-capsules blocking the skyrails around the airship. I will not discuss the sense of the skylines here, but a button on a device hanging from a rope gets fist-smashed and nothing moves one millimetre. I wouldn’t want to have to create a new button-push-animation for these two occasions, but some swinging would have been nice.

Also odd was the very distinct knowlegde Booker has about the design of the skylines around the Hand of the Prophet.

We’ll continue with the meeting with Comstock, the final battle and the ending.

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